'Tahs sign SA-born Japan star
Sydney - Super Rugby champions, the Waratahs, on Friday announced the signing of Suntory Sungoliath centre Kotaro Matsushima for the 2015 Super Rugby Season.
According to the Waratahs’ official website, Matsushima has agreed to a short term contract with the Waratahs and will join the squad in March through to August 2015.
The 21 year-old South African-born Matsushima is fast developing a reputation in both Japan and South Africa for his pace and agility on field as well as his versatility at wing, centre and fullback.
Demonstrating a sharp side-step, the youngster impressed recently at outside centre in Japan’s clash against Samoa in 2014 and has many speculating of his future in Super Rugby.
“I am greatly appreciated (sic) for my team to let me challenge to join the great team like Waratahs,” said Matsushima.
“I am very looking forward to have a new experience and learn a lot of things. And I want to grow more, not only a better player but also as a person.”
Suntory Sungoliath welcomed the news that Matsushima would join the Waratahs over the 2015 Super Rugby season.
“We are very happy to announce Matsushima’s new challenge to Super Rugby. We hope that he will have the great experience and grow as a professional player,” said a spokesperson for Suntory Sungoliath.
The former Toin Gakuen High School student showed promise from an early age and became the first Japanese player to be signed to the Durban Sharks Academy in 2011, making his debut for the Sharks XV in 2014.
Matsushima has earned six Test caps for Japan, debuting for the national side against the Philippines in May 2014 and scoring two tries in that match.
Position: Utility back (Centre, Wing, Fullback)
Place of Birth: South Africa
Senior Club: Suntory Sungoliath (Japan)
Test Caps (Japan): 6
Test Points (Japan): 20 (4T)
Test Debut (Japan): 2014, May 3rd - Japan v Philippines at Silangan (2T)
Sharks (RSA) Academy: Jan 2011-Oct 2013
Suntory Sungoliath: December 2013
Contract Period (NSW Waratahs): March 2015-August 2015.